India rates at near 2-year high on firm demand; Thai prices slip

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New supplies in March could impact prices - Thai trader

Vietnam rice exports down over 17% in January

Rice prices stay elevated in Bangladesh despite good crops

By Rahul Paswan

Feb 9 (Reuters) -Indian rice export prices extended their rally to a near two-year high on strong buying, while Thai rates fell for the second straight week due to a weaker baht and lower demand.

Top exporter India's 5% broken parboiled variety RI-INBKN5-P1 was quoted at $395 to $402 per tonne this week, up from last week's $393-$398.

"Indian prices are going up but still buyers are making purchases for March and April shipments," said a Mumbai-based dealer with a global trade house.

Thailand's 5% broken rice prices RI-THBKN5-P1 were at $480 -$490 per tonne on Thursday, down from $495 per tonne last week.

"Despite the weakening of the prices due to the exchange rate, demand remains weak because exporters sees the current prices as high," a Bangkok-based rice trader said. THB=TH

Another trader said supply has also decreased, helping maintain the current level of prices.

A Bangkok-based trader said prices could change once new supplies enter the market at the beginning of March.

High cost of freighters also contributed to muted supply and the rise in rice prices, another trader said.

In Vietnam, 5% broken rice RI-VNBKN5-P1 was offered at $455-$460 per tonne on Thursday, up from a range of $445-$450 per tonne a week ago.

"Traders are resuming their rice purchases from farmers to prepare for new contracts, following the holiday," a Ho Chi Minh City-based trader said.

Vietnam's rice exports in January fell 17.3% from the previous month to 359,310 tonnes, customs data showed.

"Supplies remain low as the winter-spring harvest won't peak until next month," said a trader based in Ho Chi Minh City.

In Bangladesh, domestic rice prices stayed elevated despite a good harvest, which officials blamed on hoarding by dishonest traders. The government is also importing rice while private importers have been given permission to import rice.

Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav in Mumbai, Khanh Vu in Hanoi, Panu Wongcha-um in Bangkok, Ruma Paul in Dhaka; Editing by Devika Syamnath


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